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aerysa
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PostSubject: Book Reviews   Tue Jun 18, 2013 9:35 am

First topic message reminder :

Since reading takes such a great deal amount of time, it's always nice to hear other people's opinions before deciding whether you want to dive into the book yourself or not. As we slowly get to know each other better, and our various tastes in books, manga, etc., it also helps us determine a book's interest value in comparison to our own potential enjoyment.

I for one would rather hear the opinion of someone I know, rather than that vague voice out there somewhere.

haha, I guess this thread is mainly for you silvery since you seem to be the most prolific reader among us, but anyone can feel free to share their opinions! Even if it's a book you didn't enjoy. Don't feel shy Smile

(This thread is more generic than the other topics where this has been happening.)

Nov 18, 2013
Some of the older reviews do not follow this guideline, but please use it to help structure your review so we can gain some consistency in this thread. Thanks to silvery for "developing" it~

Formatting for reviews:

1) Title + Author (+ Series info, if necessary)
2) Characters involved (optional)
3) Summary/Synopsis
4) Review
5) Rating (out of 5)
6) Sizzle meter (out of 10)

The Sizzle meter is used to give a warning regarding the smut content within a novel. People have different comfort levels with it, so this rating helps people weed out books they would or would not want to read, based on that criteria.

Sizzle meter ratings
0-2 = no smut to chaste kisses
3-5 = may contain smut, french kisses
6-8 = moderate to high content of smut, kisses that burn
9-10 = very high content of smut, erotica

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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Fri Aug 15, 2014 3:31 am

Here's another review...

Tempted by the Night by Elizabeth Boyle


Who: Lady Hermione Marlowe and the Earl of Rockhurst
What: (summary by elizabethboyle.com) Lady Hermione Marlowe has loved the Earl of Rockhurst from afar for ages and refuses to listen to all the scandalous rumors that swirl around the rakish man. That is until an imprudent wish gives her a glimpse into the earl's secret life.

Review:[/i] As usual, I'm a sucker for cheap books, especially by authors that I know and like... When I first read the summary, I'd assumed that Rockhurst was a spy. He isn't. This is actually a paranormal regency romance, which caught me off guard. So he's actually a guardian of the gate, so to speak, defending London from being overrun by demons. Lady Hermione, meanwhile has picked up a magic ring, capable of granting her heart's desire. what does she do? She wishes to be invisible so that she can follow him and know all his secrets. Now that we have gotten the slightly far-fetched plot out of the way, on to the story. I loved it. Since Hermione is invisible, Rockhurst only knows her spirit and character first before he knows what she looks like. He falls in love with her anyway. Hermione meanwhile, slowly comes to realize that she was somewhat empty and shallow, preferring fashion and gossip to anything of substance. I can't really say I disliked her for that, since she was only being what was expected of her in that time and age. I still liked how she blossomed anyway.

Ratings: 4/5 (the development was good but some of the words are definitely not from that time which might irk swedesamurai, like it did me Wink)
Sizzle Meter: 6-8 (he can't see her so he relies on touch... so yes, some of it is rather steamy...)

This is also the second book in a series of two books, the first which I didn't know about until I read this one. I think the author had been planning to write more in the series but didn't, for who knows what reason. And in case you don't remember who the author is, I've reviewed her Bachelor Chronicles sometime last year. The links to the said books are somewhere in the sharing harlequin and other e-books page... sorry, a little lazy to go dig up the links for everyone... Embarassed
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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Tue Aug 26, 2014 1:14 pm

Wooo silvery! You're back ^__^

It has been really quiet here. I honestly haven't been checking. It's way too much work to sort through my files and I haven't been reading, so don't really have contributions to make... Lol~

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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Mon Sep 08, 2014 2:51 am

Yeah, just a few more weeks and my course will be done (hurray!)

Anyway, in between classes and all my other activities, I managed to read some of the books shared by aerysa. These are actually the novels that have been adapted into manga and then translated by the dedicated staff of SMS. They are:

If love be Blind by Emma Goldrick

Who: Philomena Peabody and Penn Wilderman
What: (summary from fictiondb)She didn't intend to deceive him

When Philomena Peabody met her boss's son, he was suffering temporary snow blindness. "You sound like somebody's mother;" Penn Wilderman said, convinced by her no-nonsense attitude that she was "a sweet little old lady."

Even after she'd moved into his luxurious mansion to help look after his son, Phil couldn't disillusion Penn about her age.

To help win a custody battle for his teenage son, Phil agreed to marry Penn. But she dreaded facing him once the bandages were off, and he could see his attractive twenty-seven-year-old wife....

Review: The manga version was quite close to the original. like in the manga, Penn is a stubborn man that can't seem to shake off his initial impression of Phil, even when he realizes that she's pretty shapely for "an old lady". The manga managed to convey the interactions between Phil and Robbie perfectly, although her interactions with many of the other characters, namely her sisters Debbie and Sam were downplayed. In the book, you realize how much was removed and you can actually still enjoy the book even after you've read the manga, which is always great. However, the one gripe I had was that Phil was not as smart or sassy in the book as in the manga Mad
Ratings: 4/5
sizzle meter: 3 (The manga more or less stuck to the original. So if you're ok with the manga then the is fine for you)

Amber by Night by Sharon Sala

Who: Amelia Ann Beauchamp and Tyler Dean Savage
What: (summary from sharonsala.net)From nine to five, she was Amelia Beauchamp, typical small-town librarian. But when the sun went down, she was miniskirt-clad cocktail waitress Amber Champion. And she’d caught the eye of the town’s biggest rake, Tyler Savage. The name said it all—and this was one Savage, “Amber” knew, who would never be interested in her if he knew who she really was. She had to keep playing the game….

Or did she? Tyler, it turned out, was well aware that proper Amelia and flirtatious Amber were one and the same—and he was having a fine old time playing along. And as for romantic dinners and long, moonlit nights together, really, they were all part of the game. One which he had every intention of turning into reality….

Review: The book has slightly less similarities than the manga. The gist of the story is in the manga but with a number of differences. Overall, I loved it just as much if not more than the manga. Amelia is still the smart, sassy girl I liked in the manga but you could really feel her vulnerability and guilt more. And the fights between Rosie and Willy are more interesting too. Smile
Rating: 4.5/5
Sizzle Meter: 4-5 (slightly more than in the manga but nothing too difficult to take)

and
Acting on Impulse by Vicki Lewis Thompson
Who: Trudy Baxter and Linc Faulkner (iv)
What: (summary from fictiondb) Small-town girl Trudy Baxter is ready to take on New York City. She's looking for excitement, adventure...and incredible sex! She wants to experience every little thing -- and every type of man -- the city has to offer. Her first target -- sexy Wall Street hunk Linc Faulkner. Only, once she gets Linc into her bed, she's reluctant to let him go....

Linc Faulkner has never met anybody like Trudy. She's so spirited, so sexy, so damn uninhibited! She's his every fantasy in the flesh. Only, Linc knows he's just the first man on Trudy's sexual wish list. So what else can he do but convince her that he can be any man she'll ever want -- and the only man she'll ever need....

Review: This is the book I wanted to review... or rather warn other more sensitive readers... While the manga may already warn you about the high content of smut, I honestly wasn't expecting the amount or the creativity of it... Embarassed Trudy is as excitable in the manga as in the book and Linc really does behave like the cool, suave elite that he is... until he's with Trudy... The storyline is exactly like in the manga, except that the manga toned down the smut... a lot... But if you think you can tolerate the smut, and enjoyed the manga version, then it's still an enjoyable read.
Rating: 4/5
Sizzle meter: 9 (Role plays, among other things that might make you hot under the collar... Don't say you haven't been warned!)[/b]
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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Thu Nov 27, 2014 1:40 pm

I was finally in the mood to read (and complete) some books. So here's the review of book one and two of The Dressmakers series by Loretta Chase.

Silk is for Seduction

Who: Marcelline Noirot and Gervaise Angier, The Duke of Clevedon

What: (summary taken from lorettachase.com) Brilliant and ambitious dressmaker Marcelline Noirot is London's rising star. And who better to benefit from her talent than the worst-dressed lady in London; the Duke of Clevedon's intended bride? Winning the future duchess's patronage means prestige and fortune for Marcelline and her family. To get to the lady, though, Marcelline must win over Clevedon, whose standards are as high as his morals are...not.

The prize seems well worth the risk. This time, though, Marcelline's met her match.  Clevedon can design a seduction as irresistible as her dresses; and what begins as a flicker of desire between two of the most passionately stubborn charmers in London soon ignites into a delicious inferno . . .and a blazing scandal.

And now both their futures hang by a thread of silk…


Review: Did anyone read Loretta's previous series about the Carsington Brothers? Well, in the third and fifth book, there was a mention of the Dreadful Deluceys, whom Bathsheba was related to. This is another branch of that notorious family, who married the French counterpart. So there's a whole lot of scandalous activities, as the Noirot sisters lie, charm and cheat their way into their customers' hearts. Marcelline is the eldest and so the one who shoulders the most responsibilities. She is also the designer of Maison Noirot, their shop. She's passionate, ruthless and full of pride and will stoop to anything to ensure that their shop is known as the best to the Ton. Clevedon is the typical aristocrat, with lots of money and idle time. He's bored with what he's doing and sees Marcelline as a refreshing challenge and so pursues her. They are both somewhat similar in the sense that they both love challenges and are somewhat reckless. Also, both tend to have poker faces and will not show emotion at will. However, thanks to the events that happen, they realize that they love each other (of course) and find their happily ever after. Overall, I enjoyed it.

Ratings: 4/5

Sizzle Meter: 5 (not really a lot of smut but will be enough to make some uncomfortable)

Scandal wears satin

Who: Sophy Noirot and Harry Fairfax, Earl of Longmore

What: (Summary from lorettachase.com) A blue-eyed innocent on the outside and a shark on the inside, dressmaker Sophy Noirot could sell sand to Bedouins. Selling Maison Noirot's beautiful designs to aristocratic ladies is a little harder, especially since a recent family scandal has made an enemy of one of society's fashion leaders. Turning scandal to the shop's advantage requires every iota of Sophy's skills, leaving her little patience for a big, reckless rake like the Earl of Longmore. The gorgeous lummox can't keep more than one idea in his head at a time, and his idea is taking off all of Sophy's clothes.

But when Longmore's sister, Noirot's wealthiest, favorite customer, runs away, Sophy can't let him bumble after her on his own. In hot pursuit with the one man who tempts her beyond reason, she finds desire has never slipped on so smoothly...


Review: Sophy is the brains of the operation, so to speak. She's silver-tongued and chock full of the Noirot/Delucey charm. So that means that she's the type of heroine that I normally like Wink As for Lord Longmore, he is made to be slightly brainless but I don't really think so. He's single minded, of course and he doesn't like to think much but it doesn't mean that he can't think or put two and two together. He is somewhat endearing in his own way and not really like the heros you might read in say Julia Quinn's the Bridgerton Series but you will grow to like him. The plot was interesting and the characters engaging. Worth reading Smile

Ratings: 4/5

Sizzle Meter: 5 (again, not much, like the first book but yeah, it's steamy)

The third book, Vixen in Velvet, about Leonie, the third sister is out but I've yet to get my hands on it (either in eBook or the real thing). If I do, you can be sure I'll post it up here too. Until the next review, enjoy!
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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Thu Nov 27, 2014 4:27 pm

I missed your earlier reviews, but whoa! That smutty/steamy for Acting on Impulse? Shocked I think that's the first one we've seen rated that high...

And the reward for your (continued) contributions is in the other thread Razz

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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Thu Nov 27, 2014 5:48 pm

aerysa wrote:
I missed your earlier reviews, but whoa! That smutty/steamy for Acting on Impulse? Shocked I think that's the first one we've seen rated that high...

I believe it's because this is actually under the "Blaze" titles so yeah, they are definitely meant to make you hot all over Wink

aerysa wrote:
And the reward for your (continued) contributions is in the other thread Razz

Thanks! be sure to expect the review soon Laughing


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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Wed Dec 03, 2014 3:01 pm

Time to throw in my own little review since I actually got some reading done a couple nights ago~

The Obedient Bride by Mary Balogh

Summary
LOVE WAS NOT PART OF HER MARRIAGE BARGAIN

Miss Arabella Wilson knew perfectly well that the handsome, dashing Lord Geoffrey Astor was marrying her only out of a sense of duty. She knew she could be only grateful to this man who so generously offered her a life of aristocratic privilege. Surely she could not imagine she could ever claim his heart as well as his hand. Surely she could not object to his mistress, the ravishingly sensual Ginny Cox.

Surely she should be content with the attentions of the gentlemen of the ton who swarmed around her.

But Arabella had committed the most scandalous of sins. She had fallen in love with her own husband...

Review
The first thing to mention is that the book was originally published in 1989, so it's quite old.

The synopsis doesn't do the overall plot justice, though it kind of gives the basic storyline. The story itself actually starts a little ways before Bella finds herself married to Astor.

Lord Astor has recently come into his inheritance and offered to marry one of the previous title holder's daughters when he realized that they would be destitute without his care. The previous lord had left behind a wife and three daughters. On the way to meet said family, he questions what had come over him to offer marriage to a female that he had never set eyes on.

On the other hand, the Wilson family was expecting an older gentleman (Astor's father) to arrive since he was the heir to the title. Little did they know, he had passed on a few years earlier and his son had become the heir. Bella had offered to "sacrifice herself" to marriage with an older man because she figured her beautiful sister Frances would eventually marry her beau, their neighbor Theo.

After all, she was a tiny little thing (short and plump) with no looks to her that any man would really care to marry. Instead, she was comfortable with the idea of marriage to a kindly older man -- except that wasn't what she received! Instead, the current Lord Astor was quite young (27 to her 18) and very handsome.

So basically, the story moves along from there where they move to London after the wedding. Though she isn't comfortable around him, Bella promises to be a dutiful, obedient wife. On the other hand, Astor has been keeping a mistress (prior to the marriage, and after) and sees no reason why he should change his ways, as long as he ensures that his wife is comfortably settled.

I think the book started off really well and as the reader, you KNOW there is going to be a scene when Bella eventually finds out about Ginny (Astor's mistress). In the meantime, she has settled into London life quite well and has even made her own friends.

But after the "grand reveal", I felt like it took a turn for the worse. Bella ends up feeling betrayed by him (rightfully so), and stubbornly clings to the idea that their marriage is ruined because of him. On the other end, Astor feels angry with her that she doesn't "understand" what life "should be" like. (It's normal that men keep mistresses!)

I really liked Astor up until that point, until he started fumbling around with how to handle the situation - Bella finding out about Ginny. He does a number of things to try and rectify the situation, but nothing is done whole-heartedly. Like basically, he just did things because he thought that was what Bella would want to hear...

I've read other stories with similar plots that were executed much better - though not with the mistress aspect in it. Also, there was some weird dialogue going on... Just when I read it, it felt very unnatural.

Rating: 3 out of 5
Really, the book was average. It wasn't absolutely terrible, but I don't think it was particular memorable either. Some of the side characters (who I didn't really mention) kind of detracted from it too... Because they were annoying (lol~)

Sizzle Meter: 4 out of 10
Being dutiful to their marriage included consummation and continued attempts to breed children, but until the end, all the sex scenes were really not "scenes". It was just alluded to that they completed the act. There was one or two near the end, but even then, it wasn't anything too explicit.

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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Tue Dec 09, 2014 11:51 am

It's always nice to read a review by someone else Very Happy
As promised the third book in the dressmaker's series

Vixen in Velvet by Loretta Chase

Who: Leonie Noirot and Simon Blair, Marquess of Lisburne
What: (Summary taken from lorettachase.com) Lethally charming Simon Blair, Marquess of Lisburne, has reluctantly returned to London for one reason only: a family obligation. Still, he might make time for the seduction of a certain redheaded dressmaker—but Leonie Noirot hasn't time for him. She's obsessed with transforming his cousin, the dowdy Lady Gladys, into a swan.

Leonie's skills can coax curves—and profits—from thin air, but his criminally handsome lordship is too busy trying to seduce her to appreciate her genius. He badly needs to learn a lesson, and the wager she provokes ought to teach him, once and for all.

A great plan, in theory—but Lisburne's become a serious distraction and Leonie's usual logic is in danger of slipping away as easily as a silk chemise. Could the Season's greatest transformation be her own?


Review: Review of the third book, as promised. Leonie is the youngest sister and as with the other two sisters, she comes with skills of her own. While Marcelline is the artistic genius and Sophy the talented saleswoman, Leonie is the mathematical whiz who is in charge of the accounts. With two tempremental, artistic sisters, Leonnie is the one with both feet on the ground, the level-headed one, so to speak. Since both sisters can't really be around for various reasons, everything falls onto her shoulders and she's fearful that things will never be the same again. As for Lisburne, he only came back to England for the sake of his somewhat scatter-brained cousin and could not wait to return to the continent. However, since meeting Leonie, he has started to behave like an infatuated schoolboy and keeps berating himself over it Laughing. This was more of a meeting of like and like rather than opposites. So while they had similar traits and habits, their rather different personalities make their encounters interesting. Interesting enough but I find I'm looking forward to Lady Clara's story (which is only going to be released in 2016 ;_; )more... Oh well, give it a try ^_^

Ratings: 4/5 (I sometimes think 4/5 is the default rating I give most of the books I read...)

Sizzle Meter: 4-5 there is the usual (prerequisite  Rolling Eyes) smut but nothing overly descriptive
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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Fri Dec 12, 2014 3:36 pm

silvery wrote:
Ratings: 4/5 (I sometimes think 4/5 is the default rating I give most of the books I read...)
Haha, so true! I think there is the rare one that was less... But makes sense. 4 is kind of a recommendable book, but not like AWESOME. 3 is middle ground average. So if you liked it, it would end up being a 4 Razz

Now back with another quickie review! ^^

Tempting Mr. Weatherstone by Vivienne Lorret
A prequel/novella for her Wallflower Weddings series.

Summary
Penelope Rutledge longs for passion, but only with the man of her dreams: the brilliant, dashing Ethan Weatherstone. If only her longtime neighbor would open his eyes and realize how much she loves him. If only they weren’t best friends with so much at stake. Penelope knows her future—and their friendship—is in her hands, but is she willing to take the biggest risk of all on the man she loves?

If it were up to Ethan, life and love would be as predictable as the figures in his ledgers—certainly nothing like the adventures Penelope longs for. Yet his childhood friend has grown into a beautiful, feisty woman blissfully unaware of the danger she causes when near. Ethan knows he must save Penelope and her reputation … but can he save himself from the temptation of her lips?

Review
Oh the feels! I like the characters a lot in this story.

The two characters had grown up as neighbors where they're used to teasing each other and getting on each others' nerves. It was just the way they operated their relationship. Amidst all that teasing though, they had a mutual respect for each other.

Despite all that, the two were polar opposites in terms of personality. Pen was flighty in a sense because she was given to fanciful thoughts - even if she never really carried them out. On the other hand, Ethan was meticulous and structured in everything. Basically a random/open approach on life (Pen) versus a systematic/closed approach on life (Ethan).

From the get-go, you know there are issues. Pen realizes that she has never married because she has always been in love with Ethan. Yet the norm of their relationship is no longer acceptable because she wants more. Ethan doesn't like change of any sort, so the thought of Pen trying to leave bothers him immensely, but he never really understands why. Just the fact that she can't leave him!

The first little section was good at describing them as characters as well as establishing their status quo. The middle portion goes through with the stimulus of the situation and of course the story is concluded nicely at the end.

So back to the first comments I made, the characters were what moved the story along. As a reader, I felt drawn to both sides of the situation - one loving the other too much to stay and the other just not wanting change at all.

Ethan was a little dense (but he was for 10+ years!), but he's still such a gentleman towards her, even if there is all the teasing and ribaldry that he has towards her. In his mind, she was still the adolescent girl he had first met, not really realizing that she had grown up to be a beautiful woman.

For a novella, I really liked it, and honestly would have liked more! My catch 22 of all novellas... haha! I read them because they're short, so if it's terrible, I don't care. But if they're good, I want more!

Rating: 4.5 out of 5
For the first works I've read from this author, I really enjoyed it. I think it would be way better if she was given more time to explore the characters and settings she was working with - but it's a novella. There's only so much room! Since it's the first in her series, I would definitely go check out the rest of it~

Sizzle meter: 6
There was one relatively steamy scene, but it was short. It would definitely be enough to make someone uncomfortable if they don't like that sort of thing since it was explicit.  

Find it as part of the batch that I shared in the other thread~

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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Sun Dec 14, 2014 4:40 am

And yet another one... Go me! Finding the need to read more as it transitions into the Christmas season... It's like my body knows I need to rest more after a year of craziness or something. At least I seem to need more sleep Razz

His Unusual Governess by Anne Herries

Summary
Beneath the governess's blush…

Heiress Sarah Hardcastle is convinced her plan to escape the unwanted attentions of a fortune hunter is foolproof. Buried deep in the countryside, and with a whole new identity as prim governess Miss Goodrum, Sarah is looking forward to the quiet life for once.

But her careful masquerade is shaken when she meets her pupils' mentor, Lord Rupert Myers. An incorrigible flirt, Rupert has the looks and the charm to make Sarah blush all the way down to her high-buttoned neckline -- and the determination to uncover what's beneath! Sarah will need her wits about her if she's to resist Rupert's roguish ways and keep her secret intact….

Review
This was my first time reading this author's work, so I didn't really know what to expect! It was one of the books I found at random and decided to give it a read since the summary was interesting. I was not disappointed!

The story starts with a prologue (which I think not enough books have) and works its way from beginning to end - including their happily ever after.

Along the way, you meet some the amazing cast of characters, starting with Rupert.

Jaded in his youth, Rupert is still a gentleman who knows his duties in life and shows great loyalty to those who deserve it. On the exterior, he portrays himself as a confirmed rake (which also has the pursuits to go with it), but that is not all there is to the man. Life lessons have been hard on him, which is why he closed himself off to the world around.

His counterpart is Sarah Hardcastle, originally taking on the role of Hester Goodrum as she tries to take a break from the current situation she finds herself in - a persistent suitor who just won't take NO for an answer. She herself is not a lady of  quality (aka aristocracy), but still a lady nonetheless. A mill owner's daughter who has taken over the business after her father's passing, she knows exactly what she wants in life and she's very comfortable in most situations that she is thrown into (like condescending attitudes of others, etc.)

Though she tried to play her role, she's quickly found out and doesn't try to hide the truth. Rupert originally thought she was an adventuress and was trying to determine what her intent was in hiding at Cavendish Park.

When she realizes she can't hide it any longer, she hesitantly explains her situation to Rupert and he offers his assistance. "As a gentleman", he cannot ignore a woman's plight.

Sarah takes charge of Francesca's education and the two quickly become fast friends - like sisters. Fran is also a sweet girl of 17 who latches onto the care that Sarah shows her. She's actually the first person she confides her secret in, because she felt terrible about befriend the girl under false pretenses.

John, Francesca's younger brother is a lively youth who blooms under Rupert's care as he had taken on the role of mentor to the boy.  

The four of them rub along together, but throw in the mix of a super villain and things get decidedly messy.

The main characters were relatable and I felt my heart wrenching at both sides of the story, despite the growing attraction between them - Rupert's unwillingness to open his heart again because of the previous pain he felt, and Sarah's need to keep control of the situation knowing she wasn't a fit bride for a man like Rupert.

Rupert was a gentleman through and through, despite his misgivings - except for one instance where he stole a kiss. Sarah on the other hand was not your missive missy, but knew exactly what she needed/wanted in life.

Overall, the romance of the story was relatively slow since there was no grand moment of love's revealing or anything like that, but I still liked it! It was more realistic to me - starting with the physical attraction, then working their way through the matters of the heart.

There was drama due to the evil plots of Sir Roger, Sarah's unrelenting suitor, but it wasn't "grand adventure" either. So if you're looking for that, this wasn't the place to find it.

But, it was interesting enough that I wouldn't have put it down if it weren't the need for things like work and sleep... haha~

Rating: 4 out of 5
The characters were great and the plot flow was smooth, though some areas could have used more work. The ending was a bit rushed, but I liked it because they went all the way up to their wedding day XD And some of the writing style was a bit odd, but not enough to detract from the story.

Sizzle meter: 4, maybe 5
Given the rating table, it should be a 6 since they do more than kiss, but... It was so short, I don't know. There were a couple kisses here and there, and the action of their love scene was literally a paragraph.

- Haven't shared this one in the other thread yet, but will eventually. Unless someone feels an overwhelming desire to read the book NOW. Laughing

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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Wed Dec 17, 2014 3:33 pm

aerysa wrote:
- Haven't shared this one in the other thread yet, but will eventually. Unless someone feels an overwhelming desire to read the book NOW. Laughing

That sounds like it was aimed a little at me Laughing

At the moment trying to finish the books you've shared recently (hopefully the reviews will be up soon), so I'm ok with whenever you share them. But yes, based on the review it sounds interesting.

It's always nice to have some other reviews other than mine so thanks! Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Thu Dec 18, 2014 3:37 pm

Haha~ It wasn't specifically aimed at you really, though we seem to be the only two who frequent this thread; at least the only ones who actively post anything... So yeah, might sort of be directed at you Razz

Anyways~ One more~ It might be the last one for a bit. I like reading on my iPhone/iPod, but holding that tiny thing in that awkward position is making my arm hurt at the moment =__=;; Need to give it a break!

It's Bliss by Alene Roberts

Summary
The relationship between Miss Billie Bliss and Dr. Sheldon Dodds Ackerman had gotten off to a rocky start. Taking a college course from Dr Ackerman, she had found him terribly annoying, and he, on his part, found her, more than most of the opposite sex, totally illogical. In her frustaration Billie had slipped a note beneath the professor's door. It read: ITS YOUR FAULT DR. ACKERMAN. The results were such that no single male should ever have to deal with, let alone endure.

Review
Start with Miss Billie Bliss, a 27-almost-28 year old young lady who finds that her life as it was, was exacerbating her PROBLEM. To counter this, she decides to take matters into her own hands by controlling what she could of her environment. She quits her job and decides to head back to school...

Enter Dr. Sheldon Dodds Ackerman, an extremely intelligent 38-year old professor who happens to be a confirmed bachelor. Unfortunately, he has been roped into teaching an all-female business studies class. He has no idea how he will cope with this new situation since he finds females to be illogical and completely incomprehensible!

Add to the mix, an impulsive experiment started by the good professor who feels that it will help particular young ladies from his class succeed in their careers, and also provide some good research material for a future book endeavor as he has already gotten two under his belt.

With the help of his good friends, the professor finds his mentee/protege to be none other than Miss Billie Bliss, who out of all females he has ever met, seems to be the most confounding of them all!

I first read this book a while back when I downloaded it for free from Kindle. After the other two reads, I felt like reading something more light-hearted. Since this one is loaded up on my Kindle still, I decided to re-read it. I remember enjoying it a lot, and I wasn't disappointed the second time through!

The story is a contemporary romantic comedy that literally had me giggling at some of the antics that happened.

Billie is a young lady who is a little jaded in life regarding certain aspects (aka her PROBLEM). Because of such, she is forced to pursue "Plan B" of her life - start her own business; hence why she was taking the professor's classes. Overall, she is very sweet and optimistic.

To contrast her, Sheldon is your shy bachelor who is set in his ways since he has never understood women, and didn't feel that he would start to get them now. Not only that, but he is very structured in his approach to life; very much so organized and meticulous.

Some of the interactions between Billie and Sheldon are just hilarious, especially her grand reveal of what her PROBLEM (it's written like this in the book) is. Not to mention, some of the supporting characters are equally amusing, in particular Lora Lemmon, a classmate of Billie's (so another student of Sheldon's).

Rating: 5/5
I would highly recommend it if you're looking for something fun to read! There were some editing issues (like calling Sheldon Mr. in a few instances rather than Dr.), but nothing really huge that would detract from the story. Sometimes, the writing itself also felt relatively simplistic, but it still got the story across.

Sizzle meter: 1
It's totally clean with just a few hugs and kisses.

- I might have shared this one in the future, but I can't remember... So when I share next, I'll add it to the pile!

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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Tue Dec 23, 2014 1:38 pm

I guess I lied... Back with more reviews... Laughing

Under the Boss's Mistletoe by Jessica Hart

Summary
Contracted: One kiss with the tycoon

In high school, Jake Trevelyan was Cassie Grey's dream rebel. He surfed, rode a motorbike -- now he's her new boss!

It's events planner Cassie's job to transform Jake's mansion into a snow-kissed wedding venue. Not to relive her old fantasy they're the ones getting married.

Posing as the happy couple for a publicity photo shoot, Cassie pinches herself as Jake leans in for a showstopping kiss...but it's just for the cameras, isn't it?

Review
Just in time with a Christmas story!! ^^ I honestly don't really reading Harlequin novels, but this one was pretty cute~

Rewind 10 years to the beginning where Cassie is an awkward teenager with a massive crush on Rupert, the hottest guy in town. Because of the desire to capture his attention, she ends up throwing herself at Jake Trevalyan at the annual Allantide Ball - flirting shamelessly with him.

A later incident between Jake and Rupert forces Jake out of town and he vows never to return. He has no desire to remember anything about the past, especially nothing related to the rebellious youth he had been.

10 years later, he ends up crossing paths with Cassie. He himself has become a prominent CEO at a business while Cassie struggles with her career choice. At the time of meeting, she finds herself as a wedding coordinator who may or may not have a job, depending on the outcome of her discussion with Jake.

She thought he was planning a wedding, but really, he was looking for someone to help him turn the Hall into a wedding venue.

Basically, she ends up standing in as his fiancee since they were trying to get promotional material for the place through the magazine Wedding Belles. They were only interested in the place because Cassie fabricated the fact that Jake (the owner) was actually going to have a Christmas wedding there.

The characters were both really sweet and charming in their own way. Cassie was the "blacksheep" underachiever of her family, having flip-flopped around at different jobs for a while. All the while, her siblings were in prominent positions like doctors or lawyers.

Jake was the "blacksheep" of the town since he came from a trouble (trouble-making) family with a father who had been in prison before he ran off. He was always looked down upon in that town and he hated it. Now that he made a name for himself, he didn't want anything to do with that place. But was forced back to it due to a favour he owed to a gentleman who had helped him out before.

As a clumsy heroine, Cassie ends up creating some funny situations in which they find themselves. At the same time, she's very bright and warm. She's everything that Jake doesn't want in life because he wants everything to be structured and meticulous while she's just a walking disaster...

Needless to say, what he thinks he WANTS isn't what he truly needs and the two have their happily ever after~ Very cute~

Rating: 4 out of 5
For a Harlequin, it was cute and sweet. Very easy to read and get into. Both main characters were easy to relate to and there are no real baddies or anything like that. Both characters learn to let go of their ideals for the reality of what is in front of them.
Oh, but I should say... The language/terminology was a bit weird in places - probably because it's set in England. Weird in the sense that it's definitely not everyday language that I use! XD Like "loo" (aka bathroom) and stuff like that.

Sizzle meter: 1-2
There's really only some (passionate) kisses and the mention of love-making (like a "morning after" type scene). But nothing really beyond that.

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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Tue Dec 23, 2014 2:13 pm

And the other review...

The Heir by Grace Burrowes (Book 1 of Duke's Obsession series and Wyndham Family series)

Summary
AN EARL WHO CAN'T BE BRIBED...

Gayle Windham. Earl of Westhaven, is the first legitimate son and heir to the Duke of Moreland. To escape his father's inexorable pressure to marry, he decides to spend the summer at his townhouse in London, where he finds himself intrigued by the secretive ways of his beautiful housekeeper...

A LADY WHO CAN'T BE PROTECTED...

Anna Seaton is a beautiful, talented, educated woman. which is why it is so puzzling to Gayle Windham that she works as his housekeeper.

As the two draw closer and begin to lose their hearts to each other. Anna's secrets threaten to bring the earl's orderly life crashing down -- and he doesn't know how he's going to protect her from the fallout...

Review
Honestly... TL;DR.

I have a few books loaded up on my kindle and I couldn't remember what they were about. After looking things up, this book was one where I read a particularly bad review, mixed in with some good ones. Not good reviews per say, but ones where people enjoyed it. Anyways, this particular review was quite detailed in the reasons why it was a terrible book... Which got me really curious. I don't always agree with other people's reviews.

... Agree with the person's review. I couldn't even read it, read it. I just skimmed through, maybe halfway.

There are just SO many things wrong with it... The inaccuracies for the time period for one, and the repetitiveness as well. The hero has this ridiculous obsession with the heroine's "muffins". After she bashed him over the head, she has to fix him up, seeing as it's her employer... And she asks him to sit on the "coffee table". He randomly decides to call her Anna out of nowhere.

The hero is a horndog who is driven by his lust and is very... Open about it. The sex scenes are particularly crass and more like erotica than romance. His mistress literally says, "Now f**k my feeble brains out and cease jabbering." Along with mentions of his c**k or p***s, and how happy "it" would be to do exactly as she asks... And after he realizes that it's a trap (because the whole premise of the story is how his father, the Duke, is desperate for grandkids), he kisses her on the cheek and leaves...

I didn't have time to form much of an opinion of the heroine since I was too busy being irked by the hero and how horny he is. And according to the review I read, it gets worse... I only skimmed up to 1/3 in.

Rating: 0 out of 5
Seriously, do NOT read it... Unless you're into erotica type stories - more about the smut and less about the romance. I was collecting her stories since the story ideas seemed interesting, but I don't know if I can read that type of style of writing... Ugh. Yuck. I'm not squeamish really, but you don't have to mention the man's man parts at every turn of the corner in a sex scene to have it sizzle. That's so tasteless. Along with all the complaints above, the dialogue is some of the weirdest I've ever read.

Sizzle meter: 8-9
I only mentioned the first sex scene, and skimmed as far the second one, and they were both pretty explicit... The first one was between him and his mistress, then there's some kissing between him and the heroine, and by 1/3rd of the story, they're uh... Getting it on, in different ways... Where the heroine is WAY too obsessed with his man parts and he doesn't give a crap because he's so horny he needs release... She basically stares at him while she started stroking him with her hand, and wants to unfasten his breeches to continue, but won't because of morality issues or something. Then he strips himself and together (his hand guiding hers) they continue what she started... While she stares at it the whole time... ("A man's body is so different! Oh my!") And yet, she sees it as a "learning experience" that he "shared himself with her" in such a way. ... What?

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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Mon Dec 29, 2014 4:02 pm

Wow, you've been busy... But yes, erotica is something I wish they'd put on the label or something... Thanks for the warning, and since you didn't share it, I doubt I'll stumble upon it Laughing
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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Fri Jan 02, 2015 12:52 pm

haha, yah... It was my turn to spam with reviews. Things have been quiet at work and when I get home, didn't feel like doing much XD

Ugh, it's annoying how sometimes what I would think of as erotica is benignly sitting in the romance department. It's one of those that sits on the fence between romance and erotica. Like supposedly there's a story, and it isn't like sex scenes left right and center... But still, it's way more explicit than steamy scenes from what I would consider a good romance. Or maybe it's just the style of writing... I just cringe when I read stuff like that. At least I know to avoid that author in the future.

I think I did share it a while back... You would have to purposely dig through the thread to find it Laughing

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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Sat Jan 17, 2015 3:03 am

aerysa wrote:
And yet another one... Go me! Finding the need to read more as it transitions into the Christmas season... It's like my body knows I need to rest more after a year of craziness or something. At least I seem to need more sleep Razz

His Unusual Governess by Anne Herries

...

Thanks this seems like it would be an interesting read.  I seen this authors books all over the place and yup I'm going to give it a try.  Thanks for your Review, it was really helpful!
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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Mon Feb 09, 2015 7:29 am

So, I just finished the Maze Runner series and it wasn't half bad. I don't think the writing is awe-inspiring, but for a young adult novel series I suppose it is appropriate for the level. Perhaps it could be more challenging reading level wise.

1) Maze Runner Series by James Dashner (Trilogy: Maze Runner, Scorch Trials, Death Cure)
2) Thomas, Minho, Newt, Teresa, Brenda, and many others, but these are pretty important
3) Post-apocalyptic; Thomas finds himself waking up with no memories of anything or anyone and surrounded by a bunch of young people living in this community surrounded by a maze. They have carved out a live of survival in this place and all have come to it in the same manner. They have a group of people who go out each day to map out and search the maze for a way out. They return before nightfall each day otherwise they will be killed by these horrible creatures. The community is nothing but boys, too, that is until Teresa arrives--also with no memories, but she and Thomas can communicate telepathically. If I say much more, it will be too much spoilage. If you want to know more without reading the series, you can Google it.
4) Not bad. I read it till the end--that's 3 books. So, it kept my attention with the mystery till the end. But, somehow the series as a whole was not an "OMG! You've got to read this! It's so incredible!"
5) 4
6) 1
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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Mon Feb 16, 2015 5:42 pm

The Secrets of Sir Richard Kentworthy by Julia Quinn

Who: Iris Smythe-Smith and Sir Richard Kentworthy
What: (Summary taken from juliaquinn.com) Sir Richard Kenworthy has less than a month to find a bride. He knows he can’t be too picky, but when he sees Iris Smythe-Smith hiding behind her cello at her family’s infamous musicale, he thinks he might have struck gold. She’s the type of girl you don’t notice until the second—or third—look, but there’s something about her, something simmering under the surface, and he knows she’s the one.

Iris Smythe–Smith is used to being underestimated. With her pale hair and quiet, sly wit she tends to blend into the background, and she likes it that way. So when Richard Kenworthy demands an introduction, she is suspicious. He flirts, he charms, he gives every impression of a man falling in love, but she can’t quite believe it’s all true. When his proposal of marriage turns into a compromising position that forces the issue, she can’t help thinking that he’s hiding something… even as her heart tells her to say yes.


Review: I finally picked up a book and finished it!But then again, there's something about JQ (to me anyway) that makes it difficult for me to put any of her books down. The story starts with Sir Richard attending the "legendary"Smythe-Smith Musicale, and spotting Iris trying to hide behind the cello throughout the horrendous performance. Intrigued he requests an introduction and then woos and marries her... all in two week. It then becomes a backwards courtship of sorts, when he continues to woo his wife, all the while not telling her why he married her in such haste. After a while, you can sort of guess the secret, but in the meantime, it is engrossing and you will keep going because you want to know what the secret is. The main characters are likeable as usual, although I feel that both were not as well fleshed out, compared to JQ's other books. There was not as much back story on either of the characters and was instead very much focused on the now. But like with all her books, she plays more on emotions and other internal conflicts as a plot mover, instead of creating villains and dramatic incidents. I loved that she made other characters from her other books appear as guests, and that she tied events mentioned in her other works into this one. (I know that would be a lot~ of work as the Smythe-Smith have been mentioned numerous times in her Bridgerton Series) She also includes her fiction within a fiction series, written by Sarah Gorely. If you've been entertained by Ms. Gorely before, prepare to be further entertained Wink All in all, while the main characters aren't as meaty as compared to her other works, I still found the story enjoyable and I would definitely recommend it to other readers.

Ratings: 4/5

Sizzle Meter: 4-5 there is the usual smut but only a little towards the back

This book wasn't shared as an ebook but since I love JQ, I just bought it in the bookstore when I saw it. If you want it , ask our kind aerysa and hopefully she'll share it soon. If not, she has shared a whole lot of other books that deserve to be read as well Laughing

Well, I hope I'll be in the mood to read something and post the review up. For anyone celebrating the Chinese Lunar New Year, Happy Holidays to you Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Fri Mar 20, 2015 1:14 pm

Heeey! Sorry I've been MIA for so long. Between just being busy, computer issues and vacation, I haven't had time to check what was going on here. As a result, I haven't been keeping up with the latest book releases! =__=;;

That said, I do have some contributions to be made to the thread. I had a bit of a reading streak and there's nothing better to do while waiting for your flight at the airport/sitting in the airplane... For now, just wanted to drop in and say that I'm alive! Laughing

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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Fri Mar 20, 2015 5:27 pm

aerysa wrote:
Heeey! Sorry I've been MIA for so long. Between just being busy, computer issues and vacation, I haven't had time to check what was going on here. As a result, I haven't been keeping up with the latest book releases! =__=;;

That said, I do have some contributions to be made to the thread. I had a bit of a reading streak and there's nothing better to do while waiting for your flight at the airport/sitting in the airplane... For now, just wanted to drop in and say that I'm alive! Laughing

I know what you mean! I haven't been here in ages either Laughing So I guess this is also to say I'm not dead either.
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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Tue Mar 24, 2015 2:31 pm

Okay, so to make a comeback... Lol~ Let's start off with the collection of reviews I have to do. Posting for the other thread (^_~) will have to wait since my computer hates me when I try to do multiple things at once. I don't want it to die on me since I'm super reluctant to get a new one.

Bartered Bride by Anne Herries

Summary: Her hand in marriage traded in a game of cards, innocent Lottie is completely out of her depth engaged to consummate bachelor Lord Rothsay. Not only is he a prolific womanizer, he's also got a ruthless streak, leaving Lottie fearful about revealing that she isn't the woman he'd agreed to marry!

Rothsay should have no qualms about ending this folly of a betrothal, especially when he learns he has been deceived. But sweet-natured Lottie has got under his skin and suddenly he wants to turn his inconvenient fiancée into a wife for real!


Review
After reading that other novel by this author that I reviewed previously, I was really excited to jump into another book of hers. Hm... I wasn't as charmed as I was the first time around?

Nicholas, Lord Rothsay, is implored by his godmother to consider marrying and continuing the family line as he is advancing in years (29) and in need of settling down. At the same time, his reputation of being a rake precedes him - mothers with marriageable daughters keep them far, far away.

For reasons unknown to himself, he finds himself in a bind. As payment for a gambling debt, a gentleman offered his daughter's hand in marriage and before even meeting the chit, he accepts.

Charlotte Stanton's father is a hardened gambler who has wasted away what little finances they had. Little did she know, her sister's hand in marriage was offered as payment while they were away. (She stayed at home with her aunt while her father and sister ran off to Paris.) When she finds out about this, it's also to the unfortunate news that her sister Clarice refuses to accept... Eventually running away.

Since the two are twins, Lottie finds herself torn on what to do. She doesn't truly want to accept this marriage, but sees no other choice as they would lose their house otherwise. It was all that they had left of their meager possessions.

Little did she know, there was a specific incident in Paris between Nicholas and Clarice that has hardened his views about her. (Mini spoiler, but Clarice is a slut and she slept with one of Nicholas' friends and then stole his money. Something that he witnesses with his own two eyes.) Left in the dark, she ends up accepting his marriage - surprised by his unexpected hostilities. She was originally hoping to find a way to get him to release her from the responsibility, but refuses to back down after his harsh treatment.

All the while, Nicholas is wondering what his bride-to-be is playing at as she isn't behaving like the conniving seductress he had met in Paris. Instead, she's completely sweet and biddable.

Of course, like all secrets in any story, the cat is out of the bag and Nicholas discovers that Lottie is not his true intended, but rather a substitute. Though they had kind of been rubbing along somewhat, this once again hardens his view of her. She asked for him to release her, now that he knew the truth, but he refuses. Instead, he demands that she does exactly as she was supposed to - otherwise...

Anyways, the drama intensifies as the two try to make a life together somehow. He doesn't fully trust her, but he needs a wife. Basically, any woman will do.

... I don't want to say much more before I end up summarizing the entire plot line, but there is a villain in the story. Also, Lottie does her best at being a wife while Nicholas... He was a rather wishy-washy hero. Some days he felt like she was the real deal of what she seemed like, then something would happen and his views would shift. Despite living with her and seeing her on a daily basis, he couldn't quite let go of the fact that she had deceived him initial (and that the rest of her family are a bunch of swindlers/cheats - mainly her sister).

The back and forth of Nicholas' attitude quickly became rather... Frustrating. It started to feel overdrawn out, when there should have been a quicker resolution. The beginning was really good, but the middle of it was kind of mediocre and the ending was good. It just wasn't a good solid read like the other book.

Rating: 3.5
I liked it, yet didn't like it too (certain parts)... haha~ But it was more than just an average book.

Sizzle Meter: 4 or 5?
I really can't remember since I read this a month ago, but they do get married and consummate their marriage. I'm going to assume there are some love scenes.

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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Tue Mar 24, 2015 3:27 pm

And some more~ Another "new" author - Amanda Grange. The next two reviews will be for her books.

Harstairs House

Summary: From the author of Mr. Knightley's Diary and Lord Deverill's Secret comes a sparkling tale of a woman, her inheritance, and the rake who could ruin everything.

Inheriting a house from a stranger was shocking enough. Then Susannah Thorpe learns that in order to claim her inheritance, she must either wed in a month, or else spend the next thirty days in Harstairs House-a place purported to be haunted. Not about to marry, she makes the arduous journey to her new home, only to discover that there's already a tenant living there: a broodingly handsome man named Oliver Bristow, who has no intention of leaving before his lease runs out-in another month. Now Susannah must share her quarters with her mysterious, rakish tenant- without falling head over heels in love.


Review
The start of the story was so fantastical that I was intrigued from the get-go. Susannah was working as a governess/nanny and finds herself visited by an unexpected gentleman who tells her about her equally unexpected inheritance. Since she didn't feel inclined to stay in her position, she quickly invites Miss Constance to join her (her employer's poor belabored companion).

The two were given warning that the house was thought to be haunted, but they decide to go anyways. The conditions of the inheritance were either that she marry within a month (how could she when she didn't even know any eligible bachelors?!) or live within the property grounds for a month.

Once the two arrive at the strange house that she could potentially inherit, the two get separated (arrived in the middle of the night) where Susannah unexpectedly bumps into Oliver who was already living there as a tenant. Neither is willing to budge for various reasons, so they decide to share the house and stay as far away from each other as possible.

Obviously... That doesn't happen... But rather, they bump into each other all the time. It's a little disconcerting for Oliver because of the secrets that he keeps...

Anyways, the intrigue of the story is discovering along with Susannah what Oliver is really up to and why he seems determined to stay. At the same time, she tries to keep busy by organizing the house and sorting what can be repaired/kept while the other things left behind need to be discarded.

Saying much more about the plot line will ruin it, so I'll mention stuff about the characters instead. I really liked both Susannah and Oliver, Susannah especially. She's a hard-working woman who doesn't shirk away from her duties and does her best to help others (like how she offered for Constance to come away with her). Her upbringing is unconventional as she grew up with her father, who never put restrictions on what she could do/learn. She's very much an independent woman for her times.

Oliver on the other hand is wary and cautious as he tries to keep his secrets in the dark. Even so, his slip-ups are noticed by Susannah who has no qualms about looking into her own suspicions. Though he knew he should stay away from her, he found that he couldn't and he was charmed by her charitable spirit along with her intelligence.

I was ready to love this story... I really was! Until the end... Everything came crashing to a close rather abruptly and there were a few details here and there that were left hanging. It was such a delightful read from the beginning, I couldn't help being disappointed by how things were wrapped up.

Rating: 3.75
Lol~ I really want to recommended it, but knowing I didn't love the ending... I'm not sure. The suspense and drama of their meeting and everything else was really well done though. So if you don't mind a mediocre ending, then yeah, go for it! As the first works of hers, her writing was enough for me to want to read more.

Sizzle Meter: 1-ish?
I think they kissed once, maybe twice? The story line was more like a suspense historical romance (as crazy as that sounds...) XD

**********

Lord Deverill's Secret

Summary: Arriving in Brighton, Cassandra Paxton had one important task-to uncover the meaning of a letter she'd found amidst her late brother's belongings. She knew of only one man who could help her: Lord Deverill, who just happened to be the most eligible bachelor in all of Brighton.

But what she didn't realize-until it was too late-was that the handsome earl had a secret of his own. One that might prevent him from telling her the truth-and one that made a marriage between them impossible. Which was most unfortunate, considering the way his gentle touch made Cassandra's pulse quicken.


Review
Cassandra finds an unfinished letter from her late brother that hints at something terrible he might have done. Fearful that there might be an abandoned woman somewhere out there, harmed by her brother, Cassandra seeks the advice of Lord Deverill who was supposed to be her brother's friend. He quickly sets her mind at ease that it might just be a gambling debt, rather than this abandoned, impregnated woman that her mind had conjured up. Thankful for his assistance, she still doesn't feel completely appeased and is determined to speak with a few of his other friends.

Upon learning of her intent, Justin begins to feel worried that she's poking her nose into things that are better left alone. Digging up the past could bring unnecessary dangers, so he tries to keep an eye on her.

As they continue to meet in Brighton society, the two find that they rub along really well... Except there's always a barrier between them because Justin always seems like he's withholding something from her (which he is). He desires her and wishes he could marry her, but knows his secrets would ruin everything between them. (At the same time, despite his title, he's also impoverished and should actually marry for money; not that this is a huge deal in the story.)

At the same time that she's trying to find out what happened with her brother, Cassandra faces the daunting task of cleaning up their town home, preparing it for sale. With Rupert (her brother) leaving her and her younger sister behind, their financial prospects are dim - they really need the money from selling the house.

... I think this author does intrigue really well! While Cassie is running around trying to uncover the truth, Justin is busily at work in the shadows, trying to protect her from the unknown enemy who is trying to hurt her.

Anyways, unlike the previous book, this one was good the entire way through. It even had a mini epilogue which I love~ The characters were likeable, especially Molls, Cassie's maid/servant/whatever. While Cassie was the optimistic one, she would be the grumbly "voice of reason". Like the very beginning of the story where Cassie is determined to visit Justin at his house, which obviously is NOT something a woman does. When Molls complains that she shouldn't be going by herself, Cassie replies with a grin that she's not alone since Molls is with her. (I believe she was a long-time retainer who stayed with her even after their family finances suffered.)

Rating: 4.5
The story has our adventurous heroine who does things that most women wouldn't even dream of doing, our nefarious villain who tries to get his way, and the honorable hero who does everything he can to protect our heroine. All the while, as you learn about the secrets that were first hidden, you begin to have more respect for the actions that are taken. Overall, I really liked that everything was interesting from start to finish. I definitely didn't guess who the villain was!

Sizzle Meter: 1?
Ugh, I seriously do not remember! I'm 99% sure it's clean, like maaaybe a kiss? Maybe? Definitely nothing to get squeamish about.

**********

I guess I just have a weakness for suspense-ish stories... haha! I love that extra depth that it adds to the plot. It takes the focus off of the romance, but still has it in there. If it's well written, I always want to keep reading to find out what those deep dark secrets are XD

Anyways, there's another book to review, but I think I'll stop there. Not sure if I should bother since a lot of people have already recommended the book. I finally took my first dip into the world of Julia Quinn with The Duke and I, which I know silvery has read (along with like ALL her book... hehe~). At the same time, we don't have a "formal" review for it... *shrugs*

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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Tue Mar 24, 2015 5:30 pm

aerysa wrote:

Anyways, there's another book to review, but I think I'll stop there. Not sure if I should bother since a lot of people have already recommended the book. I finally took my first dip into the world of Julia Quinn with The Duke and I, which I know silvery has read (along with like ALL her book... hehe~). At the same time, we don't have a "formal" review for it... *shrugs*

Laughing I sort of reviewed it in the old forum, but I just summarized all eight books and gave my honest opinion about them. So, no, we don't have a formal review on the Bridgerton Series. I hope you liked it anyway. It's nice to see so many reviews up, might inspire me to read some books too. Wink
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PostSubject: Re: Book Reviews   Fri Mar 27, 2015 3:31 pm

Well, might as well do it then since I did read it! Haha, makes me feel good about myself that I actually read something Razz

The Duke and I by Julia Quinn (Book 1 of Bridgertons series)

Summary: HAS THE DEVASTATING DUKE FINALLY FOUND A BRIDE?

All the society papers say so. But, only the Duke of Hastings and "his "intended" know the truth. For the irresistible Simon Basset has hatched a plan to keep himself free from all those marriage-minded society mothers by pretending an attachment to the lovely Daphne Bridgerton. After all, it isn't as if the brooding rogue has any real plans to marry--though there is something about the alluring miss that sets Simon's heart beating a bit faster. And as for Daphne, surely the clever debutante will attract some very worthy suitors now that it seems a duke has declared her desirable...

But as Daphne waltzes across ballroom after ballroom with Simon, she soon forgets that their courtship is a complete sham. Maybe it's the mesmerizing look in his intense blue eyes, or the way she feels in his gong arms, but somehow Daphne is falling for the dashing duke ... for real! And now she has to do the impossible and keep herself from losing her heart and soul completely to the handsome hell-raiser who has sworn off marriage forever!


Review
The book starts off with an interesting prologue into our hero's background before starting off the first chapter with a titillating snippet of gossip from Lady Whistledown's Society Papers, the most intriguing "gossip magazine" of their time. It also gives a quick overview of the Bridgerton family, before you actually get the chance to meet said family.

Daphne Bridgerton is the oldest daughter of the Bridgerton family who has made her comeout a couple years ago, but doesn't seem to take with any of the gentlemen who might wish to take her hand in marriage - much to the despair of her mother Violet. With 8 children to deal with, and 4 of them at a marriageable age, it's all Violet can do to urge them into looking for their significant other, and thinking about securing their own family.

From the get-go, you get the sense that theirs isn't the typical family of that time period. Instead of children being handed off to nurse maids, then governesses/tutors, their mother is very much involved in their lives. Already, it was enjoyable to see that companionship between mother and daughter.

Jumping a little to the first meeting between our hero and heroine, it was a fresh take on things since they didn't meet during normal circumstances. Instead, Daphne finds herself in potential danger from an ardent suitor who refuses to take no for an answer. Simon, sneaking into the party from the side doors comes across this situation, thinking he won't help unless he really needs to... Only to witness the fact that he didn't need to, because Daphne is the most unusual of women.

Many see her as "one of the guys" like your modern day "girl next door" type, because she learned quickly to fend for herself against her 3 older brothers.

There's immediate attraction between them, until Simon realizes who she is -- his good friend's sister as he was friends with Anthony, Daphne's eldest brother. Then the whole, "You do NOT lust after a friend's sister!!" dilemma comes into play.

As a whole, the story was really good since it was refreshing to see the protectiveness of Daphne's family, yet also Simon's own sense of protectiveness towards her - though he never intended to marry her.

I really liked the fact that Daphne wasn't those wilting wallflower type heroines, but rather a young lady who knew her own mind. She took action when she felt it was necessary, even if she had to stare down her brothers to get what she wanted.

On the flip side, I didn't mind Simon as a hero, but... He was rather weak. He definitely wasn't my favorite male character. His "deep dark secret" was kind of... I get it, but at the same time, it didn't feel like his issues were resolved realistically? I don't want to say much more since that plays a huge part in the story.

For book 1 though, it was definitely really fun to read - knowing that there's more coming! The family has its own spark! And the very ending of the book... I kind of figured it was something like that (though I still don't know who exactly it is), so all the more reason to keep reading! XD

Also, props to JQ for her dedication to detail! Checking out her website and how she has all the timelines in order and everything... WOW! As an amateur writer who tried to write her own little series, I know how tricky that can be. So for 8+ books... Yeah, craaaazy~!

Rating: 4.5
Just because I wasn't super fond of Simon and he was the hero of the story. He had his moments, but he was rather weak-willed in comparison to Daphne.

Sizzle Meter: 4 or 5
Had some precursor to love making scenes, as well as love making scenes.

**********

That said - which one is your fave book from the series silvery? I'll read them in order when I get around to it, but based on the summaries, I definitely feel like I'll enjoy some more than the others... haha!

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